Oscar Wilde Literary Tourism project launches in Co. Fermanagh

This week saw the launch of the first phase of Wilde Island Town (WIT): Home of the Happy Prince, a Literary Tourism project which aims to stimulate new year-round tourism for County Fermanagh and to offer timely support for the revitalisation of the Enniskillen high street.

Wednesday, 12th May 2021, 3:18 pm
Five year old Thea Johnston, Enniskillen Integrated Primary helps artist Simon Carman and Helen Sharp as they begin the installation150 little swallows in gold leaf in and around Enniskillen centre. Picture by Brian Morrison.

The initial phase of the project will see the installation of 150 little swallows in gold leaf in and around Enniskillen centre, on the exterior facades of retail stores and community buildings including its schools.

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According to Sean Doran, artistic director of Arts Over Borders, the organisation delivering the project, the Swallows installation is a fitting start to the project as the swallow symbolises optimism and hope and builds upon Oscar Wilde’s association with Enniskillen.

The number of swallows is also significant as 2021 marks the 150th anniversary of Wilde leaving Enniskillen where he had lived as a boarder at Portora Royal School from 1864-1871.

The project builds on the work laid down by the Arts Over Borders destination literary tourism events in Enniskillen and Fermanagh on Samuel Beckett and Oscar Wilde that have been developed there since 2012.